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UN Special Adviser Issues Recommendations for SDGs

Jeffrey-Sachs27 August 2013: Jeffrey Sachs, Special Adviser to the UN Secretary-General on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and Director of The Earth Institute, Columbia University, has proposed a number of recommendations for the design of the post-2015 development agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), building on successes of the MDGs since their adoption in 2000.

Writing in an opinion editorial for Project Syndicate, 'Global Development's Winning Goals,' Sachs cites data from Sub-Saharan Africa, and describes the increased attention, resources and organization that the MDGs have given to development issues, including extreme poverty, disease control, economic growth and debt forgiveness. He argues that the MDGs have been taken seriously by African governments, allowing them to focus action and public awareness, as well as foreign aid, on key areas. He also notes that much remains to be done to achieve MDG targets, especially in the area of health, and encourages donor countries to continue to fund these projects.

On the SDGs, Sachs says the new agenda should continue the work of the MDGs while setting goals to eradicate poverty, ensure environmental sustainability, and promote equitable economic growth. He urges that there be no more than ten goals, and that both rich and poor countries be held accountable for meeting them. Sachs envisions the SDGs to aim for ending extreme poverty while mobilizing groups of experts around the issues of sustainable development. He believes the SDGs can do for sustainable development what the MDGs have done for the global fight against poverty. [Project Syndicate Op-Ed] [MDGs Website]